Weight Gain Despite Working Out

by Aisha Kadiri
(Dearborn Heights, Michigan, USA)

<i>Balancing increased calorie needs when using an extreme workout program to lose weight is tricky. Photo/jontunn</i>

Balancing increased calorie needs when using an extreme workout program to lose weight is tricky. Photo/jontunn

HELP! I am 5'4" 130lbs most I have ever been. Working out regularly, but really tied down on diet and exercise regimen since December.

I do Insanity workout in the morning I am just finishing week 5 and run 5 miles at 7 mph in the evening.

Bowl of Chex Cereal + 1 tbsp cinnamon + 1/2 cup 1/2% milk
Nescafe instant coffee (2 tsp) + 1/4 cup 1/2% milk

Sandwhich (100 calories in bread)
Immitation Crabmeat (2 sticks) or 3 tbsp full fat greek yogurt or large boiled egg
Toppings: tomato, 2 green onion sprigs, 1 tbsp cayenne pepper, 1 tbsp yellow mustard
Piece of fruit: (apple, orange, pear) and mini-bag of baby carrots

Salad with crabmeat, or egg topping and Red Hot hot sauce with mustard for salad dressing
2-3 servings of whatever tomato based stew my mom makes (i.e. green beans, okra, kidney beans, peppers)

2-3 servings of ice cream or 1-2 servings of cottage cheese with fruit or 3-4 servings of semisweet chocolate chips with walnuts

I have been doing that for 5 weeks (with maybe 2 days that I ate out for dinner - Chinese) and no weight loss. I think I've gained weight, as my clothes are tighter.

Please help!

Hi Aisha,

Every weight loss and exercise program should begin with a physical. Talk to your doctor about the program you'll be using. This exposes any medical reason that may prevent weight loss or any physical issues that need to be addressed. I suggest this for everyone. Now, that's out of the way, on to your question!

The trick with the Insanity workout program is to balance calorie needs. Your body needs more calories when you dramatically increase physical activity. Insanity has a few equations to help you figure out how many calories to consume with the level of activity you select. If you estimate your calorie needs too high, you'll gain weight. Sounds like you need to adjust the amount of calories you're consuming. Check with their support or FAQ section since I'm not an Insanity expert.

You don't have much weight to lose so I'm guessing getting in shape is important to you. The workout you're using will certainly accomplish that! You'll feel like you're living in a different body. The workout you describe is comparable to what professional athletes do.

I'm not a big fan of the Insanity workout program simple because most people cannot commit to the time requirements. And for most of the folks I talk with, losing weight and keeping it off without going nuts is the main focus.

However a person chooses to lose weight, the formula is the same. Burn more calories than you consume by doing one or both of the following…

1) Reduce the amount of calories you eat.
2) Increase your level of physical activity.

Use current eating habits, activity level and your weight as a benchmark. Any consistent increase in activity and decrease in calories will result in weight loss.

Have you ever asked yourself if weight loss or living thin naturally is most important to you? The difference is defined here: Little Known Sequence of Weight Loss Success.

Thanks for writing in Aisha!

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